Natural Phenomena Today in...
The blackest month of all the year
Is the month of Janiveer.
The great aurora of January 25, 1938, seen from Hastings, Sussex, about 7 pm.
1801 Discovery of the first and largest asteroid, Ceres, by the Italian astronomer Piazzi. Ceres is about 485 miles (780 km.) in diameter.
1756 A brilliant light appeared in the sky at Tuam in Ireland, undulating like rippling water and vanishing to the north. A shock of earthquake followed.
1885 A minimum temperature of -90° F. (-68° C.) was recorded at Verkhoyansk in Siberia.
1840 N. De Saussure saw an aurora in the form of white spindles of light while the yellow and orange colours of twilight still lingered in the west.
1892 The first photograph of an aurora showing detail was taken by Boschin and Brendel in Finland. They used a 1-minute exposure.
1928 A storm surge wave in the River Thames flooded parts of central London. 14 persons were drowned. The tide was 6 feet (1.8 m.) above predicted level.
1831 A luminous mist at night in Italy, so bright that print could be read at midnight. Part of a worldwide 'dry fog'.
1735 The most violent gale in England since November 26, 1703. General floods. Barometer at noon 27.6 inches. (935 mb.)
1563 A tornado struck Leicester on market day, tearing the roofs from 42 houses.
1911 The temperature at Rapid City, South Dakota, fell 47 degrees in 15 minutes, from 55° F. (12.7° C.) to 8° F. (-13.3° C.)
1878 During a heavy snowstorm, a north-east gust of 186 m.p.h. (299 km/h.) was measured at Mount Washington, New Hampshire.
1769 During the early hours, two 'balls of fire' fell in London, one on Tower Hill and one in High Holborn. There was a smell of sulphur and a noise 'resembling thunder'.
1910 The great Daylight Comet was discovered by some South African diamond miners, four days before perihelion.
1939 A temperature of 114° F. (45.5° C.) was recorded at Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
1517 Three feet (91 cm.) of snow lay in the streets of Valence in southern France.
1889 A maximum temperature of 128° F. (53° C.) at Cloncurry in Queensland, Australia.
1773 Captain James Cook in H.M.S. Endeavour became the first man to cross the Antarctic Circle.
1881 The worst snowstorm of the 19th Century in London. An easterly gale of 73 m.p.h. (117 km/hr) at Yarmouth. Snowdrifts 12 feet (4 m.) deep in the Isle of Wight.
1892 The thermometer at Fort Assinbone, Montana, rose from - 5° F. (-20° C.) to 37° F.
(3° C.), 42 degrees in 15 minutes.
1854 A tornado half a mile wide, accompanied by terrific thunder and lightning, wrecked the town of Brandon in Ohio.
1906 An earthquake of Richter magnitude 8.4 in Honshu, Japan. Focal depth was 340 km. (211 miles).
1900 A barometer reading of 1079 millibars (31.89 inches) was recorded at Barnaul in Siberia.
1556 An earthquake in Shensi province, China, killed an estimated 830,000 people. Whole towns sank into sediments liquefied by vibrations.
1909 Over a hundred stone meteorites fell at Gifu in Japan, after detonations. The largest weighed 4 Kg. (9 lbs.)
1795 'Coldest day ever known' in Paris: -23.5° C. (-10.3°F.) At midnight near Geneva the thermometer was -14° C. (6.8° F.)
1851 After an earthquake, a huge meteor passed across the sky and exploded on a mountain at Guerrero in Mexico.
1805 A 48-hour snowstorm left drifts two feet deep in the streets of New York City.
1887 Snowflakes 15 inches (38 cm.) wide and 8 inches (20 cm.) thick fell at Fort Keogh, Montana.
1698 A month of great snow and frost in England. On the 29th the ice was 8 inches (20 cm) thick on the Suffolk coast.
1815 New York City became virtually ice-bound at the end of January. On the 30th the mail-boat was sunk by ice floes. The carrier was rescued.
1901 A barometric pressure of 1055 millibars was recorded in Aberdeen, Scotland.
IT HAPPENED TODAY